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I have two questions

Question Number 1
int *p;
int a[]={1};
char *q;
char b[]="welcome";

in part1.c it prints the address of variable where in part2.c it prints the values that is string? Only the return type is different how?

Question No 2

int a=10;
int const *p=&a;

Above program is pointer to constant . Here i have changed the value of a but it is not showing errors why? Does pointer to constant mean that variable should be declared as const (i.e)
const int a =10;
Posted 30-Jan-13 5:01am
Edited 30-Jan-13 5:05am
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Solution 1

I hope this isn't somebody's homework. Anyway in Q1 the difference between part one and part two is largely down to the format strings "%s" and "%d"

Given "%s" the printf code expects a char*, it get one so it prints the string. given "%d" the printf code expects an int. It gets an int* but an int* is automatically convertible to an int, it's just a 4 byte integer value ( assuming a 32bit system ) so you get the address printed as an integer. Pass *p if you want to see the value.

Q2. constness is not broken because the value of p never changes. Try for yourself deleting the line
You'll see it makes no difference to the result. 'p' is just a pointer to where 'a' is stored( the address of a ). The value in 'a' can change as many times as you like, it's still stored in the same place so 'p' doesn't change. *p is a way of saying ( the value of what p points to ) and that will change everytime 'a' changes

If pointers are confusing you then I'd advise getting a really clear understanding of them before throwing 'const' into the mix. constness is neither as easy as it should be nor the best implemented part of the C++ language. Don't get me wrong it's a useful idea just not one that fits very comfortably into C++ which makes it a slippery thing to get a grip on.
Richard MacCutchan 30-Jan-13 10:50am
Your final paragraph really says it all.
Sergey Alexandrovich Kryukov 30-Jan-13 17:22pm
Like the reply, my 5.
steven8Gerrard 31-Jan-13 2:15am
I'm actually learning in C . BTW they say it is a pointer to constant . So value should not change right?
Matthew Faithfull 31-Jan-13 3:58am
Yes I should have spotted the 'C'ness and no a pointer to a constant is just a pointer, it can change. It's the constant being pointed at that can't change in that case. As I said it's a slippery thing.
steven8Gerrard 31-Jan-13 4:43am
So you are implying a is const? Value (i.e) 10 can change . if so how this one works ?

const int a=10;
int const *p=&a;
int b=20;

I still have doubts in pointer to constant . Source found in net is not clear
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Solution 2

Solution 1 is good but doesn't differentiate the different flavors of const. Consider the following:

int i1 = 0;
const int i2 = 0;
char* c1 = "...";
char* const c2 = "...";
char const* c3 = "...";
const char* c4 = "...";
const char* const c5 = "...";

I think you have i1 and i2 figured out. Pointers complicate it a little.

c1 is a pointer to char that can be modified at will. c2 is a const pointer to char (can't change where c2 points but you can change what it points to). c3 and c4 are the same thing. c3/c4 are pointer to const char (you can change where c3/c4 points but can't change what they point to). c5 is a const pointer to const char (can't change where it points or what it points to).

Introduction of 'typedef' into the mix invites a whole new dimension.

This content, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

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